Monday, 10 August 2009

Hollywood Babble On & On #342: $50 Million? Beat It!

I hate writing about Michael Jackson, again, but word has come down from on high that Sony/Columbia will have the rights to the 100 hours of rehearsal footage, music videos, and backstage shenanigans, for something in the neighbourhood of $50 million.

Now, is it just me, or is anyone else getting the feeling that $50 million has just been pissed away into oblivion?

Here's why I think that way:

1. This is not concert footage. It's footage of rehearsals, auditions, and other pre-show paraphernalia. Plus reports from those rehearsals say that Jackson was badly missing the energy and drive he had during his peak as an entertainer. Even if it was a concert film, they don't really make all that much money, unless they involve some Disney pop-tards, and have legions of tweens who would gladly spend all their parents money to see Miley Cyrus wash the dishes in 3D.

2. $50 million is just the beginning. A lot of work has to be done to get that 100 hours into some coherent shape. That costs money, lots of money. Editors, sound mixers, and special effects technicians, etc., etc., don't come free you know. And that's not counting the marketing, distribution, and other ancillary costs (like the lawsuits that Jackson attracted like flies to shit) to get it into theatres. I can see this hitting over $100 million in costs before its premiere.

3. I don't think the audience is there. To break even, this film would have to make something between $100 million +, which is a bit of a stretch, at least domestically. Remember the predictions that millions would flood the streets outside the memorial service? They never did make it, did they? Plus those remaining hardcore fans, may not want to have their illusion of him as a little boy shattered by the skeletal, surgically scarred, drug addled shadow he became before his death. There might be some foreign interest, but I doubt that it could match the immense interest held by the media.

Anyway, that what I think.

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